Chewing is a natural behaviour for puppies and dogs and they will always find something to chew, whether you want them to or not. Chewing the wrong things can be bad for your dog's health and can be very expensive, in terms of veterinary bills and damage to your property.
Dogs enjoy chewing and it can keep them entertained for hours, helping to relieve boredom, frustration and anxiety. It also helps to maintain dental health by massaging gums, stopping the build up of tartar, which in turns helps to prevent bad breath. A chew is also an excellent way to reward your dog for good behaviour. Always remember, chews contribute to overall daily food intake and mealtime feeding should be adjusted accordingly.
Chewing is particularly common with puppies as it helps relieve their gums during teething and helps them develop a strong jaw. Never punish a puppy for chewing, just make sure you train them what is acceptable and unacceptable to chew. Plenty of praise when they chew their chews should soon have them trained not to chew the furniture!
Which chew should I choose?
There is a huge variety of chews available including rawhide, natural, nylon, plastic and dental. Below is an overview of the types of chews available:
Rawhide comes in a variety of shapes and sizes and is either compressed (hard) or munchy (soft). It is also often basted or smoked for additional flavouring.
Hard Rawhide is compressed, making it much tougher and longer lasting. Hard rawhide derives from two sources - cows: this rawhide is treated to give it a white appearance and water buffalo: which is light brown in appearance.
As your dog chews, the chewing action and its saliva will start to break down the rawhide making it softer and easier to consume. It is important that you always supervise your pet whilst feeding, ensuring any sharp edges are trimmed and any remains are binned to avoid your dog trying to swallow large pieces that may become lodged in its throat.
Hard rawhide is also available as chew strips and flips, which are the individual layers that make up the compressed rawhide. This is cut into smaller pieces earlier in the process meaning it is less tough and easier for your dog to destroy and consume.
Hard rawhide should not be thrown for your dog to catch as they could injure their teeth or lips. Puppies under 8 months should be given rawhide sparingly, as the high protein can cause stomach upsets to a developing digestive system.
Munchy Rawhide is made from crushed rawhide that is extruded and moulded into a variety of different shapes, sizes and colours. These chews are easily broken down and consumed by dogs with little risk to their safety.
Basted rawhide is always popular with dogs as it adds that variety of flavour. It is recommended that basted products are fed on a non-stainable surface as the colouring can sometimes bleed when the chew is wet.
Click here for our range of rawhide treats.
Natural Treats: From Pigs Ears to Roast Knuckle Bones, dog's love natural treats. As with any treat, your dog should be supervised whilst feeding as some natural bones can be brittle and splinter.
To see natural treat products click here.
Nylon & Plastic Chews
Nylon and plastic chews are long lasting as their hard texture wears down slowly and will not break or splinter. They are baked in a variety of flavours and sizes to satisfy all tastes and are also good at removing plaque.
Click here for our dental chew dog toys.
Your dog's teeth develop plaque and tartar the same way as yours do. When plaque isn't brushed away, it hardens and forms tartar. If not treated this can cause inflammation of the gum (gingivitis) and mean bacteria can enter the bloodstream and cause damage to vital organs, such as the kidneys, liver and heart. The best way to reduce plaque and bacteria is regular brushing. Ideally start brushing when your dog is a puppy, that way they get used to having their teeth brushed and it will become part of their routine. Older dogs will also soon adapt if you persist. If brushing is impossible, specialist chews can also help keep plaque at bay.
These specialist chews are an ideal alternative if your tooth brushing causes your dog distress. These chews use a dog's natural chewing action to help clean teeth, removing plaque and tartar, whilst freshening their breath.
Click here to view our range of dental chews
If you have any concerns about your dogs dental health consult your vet.
Remember, it's important to supervise your pet whilst feeding to ensure safety at all times.